June 1978

A Technique for Composite Photography of Surgical Specimens

Author Affiliations

Toledo, Ohio

Arch Surg. 1978;113(6):779-780. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1978.01370180121032

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Documentation of disease and disease process remains an important part of the practice of medicine. Throughout the history of medicine, the medical practitioners have tried to document lesions by means of sculptures, drawings, and woodcuts. The artists of the renaissance like Andreas Vesalius, Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, and others, through their sketches and paintings brought the neglected art of anatomic drawings and the art of documentation of human tissue to new heights. The invention of the printing machine and later photography brought new horizons to this art.

Conventionally, surgical specimens are photographed with the aid of a ruler, so as to get an idea of the specimen's dimensions. However, this traditional procedure does not lend itself to a clear visualization of the anatomic area from where the tissue has been removed. Medical books and journals are full of photographs that only after a tremendous stretch of the imagination look like

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